Crystal River Cruises officially welcomed its newest ship to the fleet on May 28, as Crystal Debussy was christened in Amsterdam. Marking the occasion were Crystal’s president and CEO, Tom Wolber, Crystal River Cruises’ vice president and managing director, Walter Littlejohn, and Crystal Debussy’s godmother, Broadway star Rachel York.
The ceremony took place during the ship’s three-day stay in Amsterdam on its 10-day Splendors of the Rhine voyage, allowing guests aboard the sailing to participate in the traditional festivities, while Crystal crew members looked on from the decks of the ship.
“Crystal River Cruises has raised the bar of excellence with each new ship, and now again as Crystal Debussy joins the fleet, effectively redefining true luxury in the river industry,” Wolber said. “At the heart of this achievement are the crew and officers, all of whom are members of the Crystal team that ensure that every detail of our guests’ experience is seamless, from ship to shore.”
Littlejohn, who presided over the ceremony as emcee, added, “It is fitting that our crew and guests, as well as representatives from our parent company and the city and port of Amsterdam are all part of this milestone for Crystal Debussy and the Crystal River fleet. They each embody elements of the Crystal Family and our vision to create the most memorable luxury travel experiences in the world.”
Godmother Rachel York serenaded guests with her rendition of “Defying Gravity,” a nod to her esteemed career on the stages of the world, including those aboard Crystal’s ships as part of the Crystal on Broadway program.
“Crystal Debussy is an exquisitely-designed ship and her crew are so warm and welcoming,” York said. “I am truly honored to be the Godmother of this beautiful ship.”
Crystal Debussy joins Crystal River Cruises, which was voted “Best River Cruise Line” by the readers of Travel + Leisure in the magazine’s 2017 World’s Best Awards.
Sailing itineraries between Amsterdam and Basel, the 106-guest Crystal Debussy embarked on her maiden voyage along the Rhine River on April 9. Guests visit ports in the Netherlands and Belgium on her seven-day itinerary, with 10-day voyages also calling in Germany. Throughout 2018 and 2019, the ship sails routes of seven and 10 days between Amsterdam and Basel along the Rhine and Moselle rivers, visiting Switzerland, Germany, Netherlands and Belgium.
Crystal’s new river vessels are the river cruising industry’s first and only all-balcony, all-suite, all-butler vessels in Europe, with every category of accommodation positioned above the waterline. They offer Crystal’s acclaimed butler service in every room category, king-sized beds, Panoramic Balcony-Windows, walk-in closets and dual vanity in the bathrooms in most categories, ETRO amenities, robes and slippers, and wall-mounted flat-screen HD TVs. Additional enticing features include farm-to-table cuisine in multiple, open-seating eateries: the elegant Waterside Restaurant, namesake Bistro cafés and the exclusive Vintage Room; and the Palm Court for entertainment, enrichment presentations and sweeping views of the countryside.